Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Good Reef!

Added him to the PictoBrowser slide show in the sidebar. (Be sure to keep emailing in your sketches and photos of your Halfland Sea Critters! nobledesign[at]sbcglobal[dot]net)

Lots to say, but for tonight I'll post this little sketch inspired by a little crab I saw in a tank the other day. I saw a particularly spectacular aquarium that gave me a clear view on how to craft the landscape for our undersea set. It will, as with the other sets for the film, involve masses of paper and plaster dressed on natural materials.

Art as my Life Quote:
He who is unable to live in society, or who has no need because he is sufficient for himself, must be either a beast or a god. --Aristotle

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Fowl Mood

I'm in such a foul mood lately. Could be menopause as I am that aged (45). If this mood is only due to peri-menopause then the world had better brace itself in about 10 years.
The good news is that as a result I realized that the Painting Chicken with a face (mine) in Halfland will be in a foul/fowl mood too. Artists are rarely happy with their works. Happy Thanksgiving to each and everyone.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Rose Red


**MY** Rose Red on the left in a detail of a portrait taken near her home in Pennsylvania recently. Isn't she the most beautiful creature?! Gah! Perfect. On the right is the Russian image from a picture or production that I can't identify but will shamelessly copy for the composition and mood for Halfland's finale.

The lovely Rose Red would be the perfect real person to be cast at the end of the first Halfland series. It's a Dénouement at the very end of the film where we back out of a white fade at the last scene's story and transition into a white fade up on a young beauty playing with simple paper puppet versions of the Halfland characters against a sheer woven curtain for a shadow play.

I'll send her everything ready to shoot at her house, or supply her with the materials and let her create the puppets--IF--that would be in some way fun for her rather than work. Otherwise, she'll get the script and the props in a ready to go box kit. It'll just be a few brief seconds on film, but it will finish the whole concept as beautifully as she is.

I'm hoping to be able to talk her into it! Woo hoo! Internet, I love you.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Grass Roots Sea Change

Thanks for hanging in with me. I am so sorry, I wrote a detailed entry about where I've been--(I just put it elsewhere, sparing you my whining waa waa no time waa waa vet appointments (still struggling with Izzy's skin) woes woe.) but you know, all that is just excuses--I've simply got to make different choices with my time. Doctors check ups for me and Izzy's severe situation notwithstanding, handmade Christmas cards, well, ok, that's seasonal and necessary in a way as we don't buy gifts for anyone. And yes, I did add teaching ballet and private art classes to my skeedooly, so yeah, that along with all the rest would take up my precious time in Halfland. The point is that I miss it in a way that requires I make some even more ruthless decisions concerning taking ballet classes and graphic projects in the new year.

In other news, there's a wonderful MAJOR Announcement to make today in Halfland...
"Driven by the forces of love, the fragments of the world seek each other so that the world may come into being. Love alone is capable of uniting living beings in such a way as to complete and fulfill them, for it alone takes them and joins them by what is deepest in themselves."
--Pierre Teilhard de Chardin



Some of the prints and cards of her wonderful works Rachael sent to me that I keep now right in front of me here.

Last week Rachael DiRenna, the incredible artist that I posted about loving her half/human/half/plant nature spirit, devic, papier mache sculptures, wrote in the comments how she'd love to help the project any way she could from her home in Pennsylvania. After I picked myself up off the floor, I calmly explained to her that it would be my fondest wish for her to create the Flowering Thoughts depicted in the finale of the first Halfland series. I had that as a secret unspoken thought ever since I'd seen her work-- unbeknownst to me she had thought of being a part of Halfland when she first visited here as well! Oh, JOY!

She's all for it! Saints b'praised! I'm going to sketch for her as much as I saw for these creatures and then entrust them totally to her, and I really do trust her. She sent me other photos of this type of creation she's made in years past that were scary spot on! I'll send her wire/and/or simple armature made to scale for the puppets the Thoughts will grow on, and will answer any questions I can via emails. I may make a mold of her sculpts and cast them with wire inside, or just ask her to create as she's used to with papier mache on wire and animate them for as long as they can take it. I might even animate their growth process with replacement sculpts, montage style. This has all just happened, so these points will be sorted out, beautifully. Misc. images from the pre-rachael 1/2L. Flora and Flowering Thoughts collage, yes, the date on those part human/plant sketches on the bottom is 6/94! There's also Quay Bros. brilliant weeds for their Roundup commercial several years ago and a real photo by Andrea Scher at the SF Botanical Gardens where she spotted this purple orchid (on right) with a real standing gray bearded monk at its center!

The truly unexpected, amazing thing this new arrangement represents is a wholesale shift in Halfland from it being my exclusive playground to more of a communal collaboration with artists of shared sensibility/interests.

This wasn't the first time I'd opened up the creative door to Halfland. Several months ago, I had asked reader from the UK, Ben Stables to create a miniature painting that will be used on the easel of the Painting Chicken character. He's working on that now (yeah, Ben?). (Ben's been a real support here, really paying attention and offering some great suggestions. My payment to him will be some plastic ants I have that he coveted and some other extra art supplies that I think he'll make good use of.) But there's more I can do with this new approach. And this is where YOU come in!...This is the actual completed door prop (second thing made for the films)for the underwater rock entrance to the seas around Halfland. I also have a good selection of shells and coral and sand (I know, glued down) ready to dress the undersea set.
I am opening up this undersea door to Halfland right now and allowing anyone reading this journal, to craft in anyway they'd like, a small sea creature of some kind, fish, seaweed, shellfish, starfish, anything, that will be used in an early sequence of the first Halfland series. It's the scene where Kyra, the black mermaid, takes the viewer off the sand of our earthly shore, beneath the waves, into the sea where she disappears inside an old wooden doorway that leads to the sea surrounding Halfland. All the creatures I receive by a certain date prior to shooting that scene will be arranged on the underwater set and filmed as Kyra and the viewer swim by.The wilder the creatures the better (see my reference collage above for some ideas about color and fun shapes!) No matter how wild your imagination, nothing can beat what nature has really made under our oceans! So go all out. They can be a small school of normal fish with unusual markings or color, just attach them all together with wire so I can animate them as a grouping! They can be a bloated big black and white puffer fish that belches out a smaller black and white checkered fish, and then that one pops out another, and so on. maybe the checkered fish belches out a sea horse that looks like a rook chess piece!! Woo! Go for it! No holds barred.

I'd be honored if you'd consider this. I'll provide the secure mailing address to send these masterpieces to, and the date to have it in by, posted on my sidebar. This is strictly a volunteer effort on your part, although I will make certain to credit you appropriately and appreciatively in the film's crawl. Be sure and provide your complete name as you'd like it to read along with your wonderful creation.

Why am I doing it? Because everyone who makes a fish or sea creature or underwater flora contribution will be saving me the time it would take me to do it, thus bringing Halfland closer to being. And more than that, because opening up this project for others to participate in just feels right. Why should I hog all the fun?! Other opportunities for joining in will be offered as they occur to me.

Additional ACTUAL NOTE:

One of the other developments in Halfland was my realization that the transition from day to dusk will play a more important role in the film. It's already written in that the time of day shifts from late afternoon in Halfland at Rana's cottage when she goes outside to collect Kyra from the stream's banks and brings her inside for tea by the fire. We know that a gentle rain falls as Rana prepares for bed, blowing out the candles and closing the shutters. That's when we notice the Pink Snail lumbering in the fading light with the porch lantern swinging next to her shell home's door.

Now I see that Yanu, the Mothman, will stay near the paper lanterns hanging across the cottage porch and into the tree (seen like the lamps in this magazine ad). I did a Halfland gasp and smile when I grasped that the Moth would be, of course, attracted to such a light!

I bought a few battery operated tea lights that will fit inside the colorful paper lanterns I will make for such a gag. They have on and off switches and last 100 hours. I took one apart for science to see whether I could make it small enough to fit inside the candles in the cottage's overhead chandelier but alas, it was so well made (!) it only came apart in gravel-sized clumps and was destroyed.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Some Frenzy.

Sketching really does help me work details out. Today I found a photo of Bolivian girls who live on an isolated island in a lake (!) carrying sticks home to their fires and I realized the way they had fabric tied around them was the way Rana should transport Kyra into the desert to find help for Tarn. It's the perfect sort of Halfland way of doing things (and makes me wonder whether one gets to Halfland through Bolivia!) The cloth will be wet to keep the fishywench moist and comfortable.

I had planned to get a lot more 1/2Landing done today than I did. I'd like to get a better handle on time but that is one slippery little frog! I did watch Nightmare Before Christmas twice, in increasing awe. I see more wonderful detail in that masterpiece at each viewing. Hats off to Phil Dale and Jim Aupperle and all the talented others that brought their fantastic gifts to that work. The scene of Sally singing in the alley has got to be the most beautifully lighted and performed film, of any kind, made. But I digress.

So much Halfland goes on in my head everyday. It's truly exciting and stimulating and delicious and frustrating. Frustrating because I'm having difficulty getting as much done as I'd like (understatement). I'm sure many reading this can relate, I'm sure the situation is universal. I goad myself into being grateful, that this is not a bad problem to have in life. Yet I have persisted in tantruming all week.

If someone appeared on my doorstep and was at all dexterous I swear I'm ready to enlist them to do some of Halfland. I would enjoy doing it all myself because it is so much fun but I see that time has its strictly finite seeming ways and I had better get on with cooperating with that.
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